Day 24 Clean Table
Finally. Home. (For a day at least.) I’m not ashamed to admit that some of the tubs and coolers from camping were still hanging out in the kitchen at the start of this day. The best part of today was recovering the kitchen and dining room. I’m thankful for a husband that still cheers me on when I send him these kinds of pictures while he’s at work.
Day 25 VCTM & Trails
So that home thing didn’t last long. I headed to Richmond again for a meeting of the Virginia Council of Teachers of Mathematics board. This was my first official meeting as one of two elementary representatives. These kinds of situations stir up a bit of my impostor syndrome. However, I was pleasantly surprised that the folks there were super kind, and I actually had decent ideas to add to the conversation and brainstorming. As I had promised myself the week before, I ended the day with a ride at Pocahontas State Park on the most perfect trails. While I was riding, my mom texted and asked if I wanted to catch up with her for dinner before heading back. We enjoyed dinner at Chuy’s while chatting about her upcoming surgery and how her friends remind me of the movie Wine Country.
Day 26 Middle School
This week Chica has been attending a middle school orientation of sorts. The bus picks her up at the top of our street, and she spends the morning there having breakfast, going to a few “classes” and eating lunch before she gets dropped off back at home. While Bubba has certainly missed her company during the day, I think it’s overall been a great experience for her. She’s talked about making a new friend, taking a tour, visiting the herpetology lab, and decorating a pot in art. I’m thankful for the teachers who gave up part of their summer to make sure incoming 6th graders feel prepared. Now we just need to figure out how to help moms and dads feel prepared too.
Day 27 Podcast & Bike Ride
Today was a first for our podcast! We welcomed a remote guest, Alice Aspinall, who talked about her book, Everyone Can Learn Math. She wasn’t afraid of our 6AM start time, and we joked about how thankful we are that a podcast is just audio and not video!
Since Chica was having something special each day at school, I felt like I should do the same for Bubba. We chose a morning bike ride on the trail and did almost 7 miles together. When I go on short adventures like this with him, I can’t help but wonder what’s to come. When he gets bigger and stronger, will he still want to go with me? I would love hike the entire VA section of the AT one summer. As of right now, it’s looking like he’s the only family member that might find that fun. We’ll see.
Day 28 Girls’ Weekend
This spring, Alissa reached out to three of us who have girls the same age about planning a weekend getaway together. Other people who heard about it assumed we were going to have “the talk,” but I think we’ve all already given it in one way or another. Really we just wanted to get together to chat, eat, run, swim, hike, and let our big kids have fun hanging out. We ended up in a little Airbnb on the Shenandoah River with way too much food for just one weekend.
Day 29 Hike
All the moms: Time to go on a hike! Yay!
All the girls: Noooooooooooo…..
All the moms: We’re going anyway. Get your shoes on.
Despite their whining, we hiked the Hightop Peak Trail, a 3 mile out-and-back on the AT that you get to from the Shenandoah National Park. The view at the top ended up making it worth it, even for the kids.
Day 30 Run Surprise
The cabin where we stayed was surrounded by beautiful farm land and an event space. Both mornings, Alissa and I went out for a five mile run along the corn fields. This morning as we were rounding the corner of one of the barns, we saw a guy sitting down taking a smoke break. I tried to act like I didn’t see him because we weren’t sure if we should even be there, but apparently Alissa didn’t look away. And she got an eye full of nekked lady! We spent much of the rest of the run trying to figure out why she was there in the first place. Were they the newlywed couple from the night before? Limo driver and guest? Owners? Who knows. Whoever they were, they certainly weren’t expecting us to come trotting around that corner in the middle of nowhere.
We were crazy hot when we got back, so jumping in the river in our shorts and sports bras seemed like the right thing to do. Eventually everyone else joined us…until they saw a snake in the water! Not being a 6 (look…I’ve learned something about the Enneagram!), I decided I wasn’t worried about it, and I stuck with my plan of swimming across the river and back while Rachel paddled along beside me. The snakes stayed away.
I’m so incredibly thankful for this weekend that we had away. No spreadsheets, no little people, no drama….it was perfect. Here’s to conquering all the hard parts of middle school together.